Business Don’t: Hiring a Reputation Management Company

Would you hire someone else to go on a date for you? No. And that's why you shouldn't hire a reputation management company. The best relationships develop naturally over time, and so does a great business reputation.

Reputation management starts at the store level. First and foremost, you have to provide a great service or deliver a great product. No amount of reputation management (aka damage control) can save your business from a bad product or terrible service.

Reputation management companies can charge a lot for each review they provide you with, and some reputation management companies aren't ethical about how the get your reviews. The reviews could be fake, incentivized (a big no-no), or be duplicated across multiple websites, which is not natural.

Plus, reviews should come in gradually and be good, neutral and bad. Are you going to pay a reputation management company forever? That would be a waste of money.

Reputation management takes a long time, and it's an on-going process, but it's definitely something you can do yourself with just a little bit of training.

Here's how.

  1. Ask your customers to review your company outright. You can ask them through social media, through an email survey, or at your point-of-sale. Don't be afraid of criticism, either. No one is perfect. You may get some neutral or bad reviews. It's how you respond to them that will solidify your reputation.
  2. Respond to reviews personally. When you get a new review, take a moment to thank the person for sharing their experience. If it's a great review, acknowledge that by saying something like "We're happy to have been a part of that experience, and we appreciate your business." If it's a neutral review, say something like "Thank you for sharing your experience with us. Would you be willing to provide us with some additional feedback on how we can improve our product/service?" And if it's a bad review, own it. Apologize for not living up to your customer's expectations and offer to make it up to them.

    This takes a personal connection to the business, and it's not something that should be outsourced.
  3. Consult with a reputable website marketing agency. They'll have the processes and experience to help you generate and respond to reviews in an organic way.
Brad Timofeev

Brad is an energetic thought leader on digital marketing.

Since joining the WebArt team in 2009, he's guided the agency's unique perspective on search engine optimization, content marketing, and other digital strategies. Book Brad for your next speaking arrangement.

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